I can’t stress the importance of double-checking medications when new or existing orders are placed. So many people just take the prescription and head to the pharmacist; never checking the accuracy of the prescription itself. All too often, the hospital sends in a direct prescription order to the retail or mail order pharmacies without the patient even seeing the prescription itself or checking whether or not it is correct.
We, ourselves, have had this problem numerous times. Unfortunately, this problem becomes expensive as the patient is the one that must pay for additional prescriptions to make up for the quantity changes or changes to the medication itself. To help combat inaccuracies in prescriptions and additional cost to your family, we recommend the following:
1. When in a doctor’s office, review all the prescriptions with the doctor and verify the quantities.
2. If receiving a new prescription and use a mail order pharmacy, request a 1-month prescription from your doctor with 1 refill as well as your 90-day prescription to be sent to the mail order pharmacy. This way you can start the medication right away and be covered if there is any delay in the mail order pharmacy processing.
3. If your doctor is calling in your prescription to a retail pharmacy, call the pharmacy before you go to pick up your order and confirm the medication name and quantity.
4. If you notice your prescription is incorrect a retail pharmacy, you have the right to deny it. Check the medication name and quantity before paying for the item. If it is incorrect, let the pharmacist know and ask that they contact your doctor for the correct prescription. You can also call your doctor’s office to verify the prescription as well.
5. Do not have your doctor call/send in a mail order prescription. If at all possible, have them send you the prescription in the mail (or hand it to you) so that you can verify the information before mailing it in yourself.
Remember that by using these 5 steps and taking your medical health into your own hands, you can not only save yourself money but also save your own life. Doctors and pharmacies are doing their best to ensure your good health but with so many patients, some tend to fall through the cracks. That is why it is crucial that you not turn a blind eye to your medications and what they can mean to your long term health. Take action and become knowledgeable about your own health.